Parenting Guru: Mommy Friendships 101: How to Make Lasting Friendships with the Right Moms for You

As someone who goes by "Mommyfriend" on the internet, I better know a thing or 12 about making and keeping great mom friends.

In my blogging career, I've written extensively about the importance of maternal friendships and how they saved my life when I needed them most. Upon making it my personal quest to encourage this vital relationship for every woman, I've learned that establishing a trusted mommy friend relationship is only the beginning. As with every relationship, mommy friendships take compromise, understanding, and the thing we struggle with most - energy.

Join me on a quick mommy friendship crash course!

Step 1: Find Mommy Friends. Not unlike dating, making mommy friends can suck pretty hard. It's time-consuming, hit or miss, and often a matter of chemistry. Check out these 6 ways to make mommy friends and find your tribe.

Step 2: Keep Mommy Friends. Step 1 offered suggestions on how to make mommy friends, but step 2 is designed to prevent you from screwing it up. Avoid these particularly annoying mom traits and you'll be golden.

Step 3: Follow the rules. Indeed, there are rules to lasting mom friendships. When adhered to by all parties involved, your mommy friendships have the potential to defy the odds. Take a peek at The Mommy Friend Commandments and pass them along. Friends don't let friends mom-friend poorly.

Step 4: Seek like-mindedness where it counts. I'm up for establishing friendships with moms who parent on the opposite end of the mommy spectrum as long as my personal parenting choices are respected. What I won't budge on, however, is my need to be mom-sad on occasion. Any mommy friend of mine is going to have to at least pretend to understand the 10 degrees of mom-sad.

Step 5: Beware of Mom Frenemies. Maybe you hooked up with a mommy friend who seemed too good to be true. Truth and time have revealed that being around said mommy friend makes you feel worse rather than better. If your mommy friend exhibits these mommy frenemy traits, drop the relationship like it's hot.

Mommy friends, take heart. Your tribe is out there waiting to be found. When surrounded by a group of parenting peers who understand you as a woman and a mother, there's no telling what their support and guidance can help you achieve. Maternal confidence, belly laughs, and hugs when you need them most are only the beginning.

Do you have a cherished group of mommy friends?

Mommyfriend goes by Lori Garcia in real life and is a Shine Parenting Guru. She writes at www.mommyfriend.com where she's busy finding perfection in imperfection daily. When she's not fussing with her bangs, she's shaking her groove thing for Babble.com.